12:59 p.m. on September 3, 2012 (EDT)
27 reviewer rep
103 forum posts

Hey guys, been a while since ive been around but I got a question!

Anyone ever had any experience with Anemometers? I've been looking at the Silva's and the Kestrels. I also noticed that Celestron makes one (I used to do astronomy and I had some very bad experiences with that company.)

Im looking for the following features in the anemometer: Wind speed, Altitude, Barometric Press, Temp, Water proof. Some of the other features I would like are Wind Chill, heat index, Humidity, Dew point and possibly data records.

Really I just want to know if anyone has had any experience with Silva or Kestrel. Im looking at either the Silva ADC Summit


Kestrel 4000


1:31 p.m. on September 3, 2012 (EDT)
2,329 reviewer rep
5,272 forum posts

I have had several Kestrels over the years, currently the 4500. We use them on the Cordillera Blanca Environmental Expedition sampling climbs (in the Peruvian Andes). While they are not a full fledged weather station, they provide plenty  of accurate information in a shirt pocket sized package. Battery life is quite good (multiple days, depending on the sampling interval you set - provides a good tracking altimeter to review your route profile later). The most basic (2000) is anemometer only, with the more advanced models providing more information. The 4500 only lacks a rain gauge. It has a memory (adjustable sampling interval). Difference between the 4000 and 4500 is that the 4500 has a fluxgate compass to you can get wind direction (plus head wind and cross wind components). The 4000 has temperature, pressure, and humidity, plus derived values (wind chill, heat index, dew point, relative humidity, wet bulb, density altitude, altitude, ambient/absolute pressure), and records the values as a function of time plus graphically. Both the 4000 and 4500 can download to a computer, with the bluetooth versions doing it wirelessly.

I have tried various others and find the Kestrel units to be best overall, and more durable long run in the heavy duty use I put them to on expeditions, backpacking, etc. I have used my current 4500 up to over 20,000 ft (Denali, Andes) and down to -200 or whatever Bad Water in Death Valley is, hot summer desert (Death Valley) and Arctic and Antarctic (down to -40 deg) and measured winds up to 70 knot gusts (and agreeing with full-fledged met stations). Oh, yeah, pick your favorite units - Imperial, metric, mph, kph, m/s, knots, F, C, magnetic  compass, true direction (you set the magnetic declination). There are some things the Kestrels won't do - max recommended wind speed is 100 knots (though I did hold it out the car window driving into a headwind and showed 110 kts with no apparent damage to the impeller), internal data smoothing, rain gauge, unattended recording of winds requires an accessory wind vane. But you expect some limitations for a pocket device (temperatures on a hike when you leave it in your pocket show more like body temperature, of course).

More expensive than some, but well worth it in the long run.

August 21, 2014
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